Investing & Impact

Shayne Evans

Founder, The Academy Group

“Shayne Evans, the Founder and President of the Academy Group, is dedicated to transforming education and fostering opportunities for young people from the most resilient communities. As the former CEO of the University of Chicago Charter Schools and Managing Director of the University of Chicago Urban Education Institute, Evans has been at the forefront of initiatives aimed at empowering youth. Notably, Evans co-founded The Success Project, a program focused on college access and graduation preparation, recognized by President Obama’s College Opportunity Day of Action. As a passionate advocate for student agency and equitable education, Evans has received numerous accolades, including the 2017 NAACP Educator of the Year Award.

His commitment to disruption is reflected in his role as Founder and President of the Academy Group, an Impact Investing Company built upon the belief that Talent is Ubiquitous, but Opportunity is Not. Utilizing funds from Mark and Kimbra Walter, the Academy Group leverages revenue generated from ownership in financial services companies to make significant investments in black and brown students across America. This unique “for-profit and for purpose” model allows Evans to ensure that emerging Academy Group leaders have access to high-paying jobs early in their careers and eventually become economic and socially just change agents.

Born and raised on the South Side of Chicago, Evans sits on numerous non-profit boards and has invested in several black and brown-led companies. He and his wife currently reside in the Bronzeville community and are excited to see their daughter attend college in Fall 2024. “